Judges 6-8 (The Daily Walk Bible).
The passage brings up the age old question of testing God. When is wanting confirmation of something testing God, and when is it not? Was Gideon right to ask for more? How do we know what God wants us to do?
Let’s bring this down to real life, since I’m pretty sure we aren’t wondering if we need to go attack the Midianites! I’m also assuming most of us haven’t heard an audible voice from God. Even if we did, how would we know for sure? I assume that there is something about the experience that makes it perfectly clear, but even Gideon, although he recognized that the Lord was talking, seemed to want confirmation. God was very gracious to him, perhaps because of the size of the task at hand, and the fact that Gideon voiced what many were feeling: “But now the Lord has abandoned us.”
The best thing that we can do when we want to hear from God is go to the Bible. Some things will be cut and dried. Don’t lie. Don’t steal. Don’t commit adultery. But other things are more nebulous. Should I change jobs? What should I major in? What career path should I take? Who should I date? Who should I marry?
I once talked to a Christian counselor who said that we sometimes make these things too hard. If we are making moral decisions, keeping God at the forefront, and making sure that our priorities are his priorities, then there may not be just one best path. The one best path is worshiping him and living for him. We can do that as a janitor, a banker, a farmer, a doctor, lab technician, an artist, or a cashier – as long as those jobs don’t take us away from our greatest priority – God! In thinking of relationships, do we really need a sign from God to tell us who to date/marry? Or do we only need to ask if the person is helping us to grow closer to or further away from the God we serve? And God may not care where we live, but He may be more worried about the family we need to take care of or whether or not there is a good church there.
So my advice is to not take a shortcut, thinking that God will just give us a sign from heaven regarding what we should do. We need to put in the hard work of study, prayer, and furthering our relationship with Him. When we do that, we may find that God will use us wherever we are and whatever we do, and we don’t have to worry about that one best destiny that God has for us. If the Bible is any gauge, he wouldn’t let us miss it anyway!